3 Ways to Learn How to Say No in Business
I’m currently taking another group of students through my group coaching program and one theme keeps coming up. That theme is about learning how to say no to things that don’t serve their business. They want the confidence to say no without the fear that they could be missing out on something.
I feel like this is something that affects all of us at some point. I know I’ve had to learn how to say no and that it was very difficult in the beginning. However, I also know that learning how to say no is what helps move my business forward. Here are a few tips for learning how to say no to things that don’t serve your business.
Realize it’s about respect.
The main pushback I hear when I advise that someone start learning how to say no is that they fear they will lose money. For example, if they say no to a low-ball offer they don’t want, then they lose the chance to make money – even though the offer is terrible!
To that, I say this: If you take up all of your time with low-ball offers, you won’t have the space for the good ones. Period. Additionally, saying no to low-ball offers is about respect. You must respect yourself in business in order for others to respect you in return.
Barbara Stanny has an excellent quote in one of her books that gets this point across. Essentially, when she was learning how to earn real money, she realized she would rather be respected than well-liked. That one shift changed her finances forever.
Besides, usually when we say no to something that doesn’t serve us then something better comes in. I’ve seen it happen way too many times to deny it.
Make your decision based on experience.
If you know something won’t serve you, it’s because it probably won’t. It’s also probably because you learned the hard way. If you can remember this as you’re learning how to say no, it becomes much easier to decline offers that don’t make any sense for you.
For example, I no longer do telesummits that I’m asked to participate in. Quite frankly, they have always been a waste of my time. This is the time I could be using to take more sales consults or pitch clients which do lead to more money.
Build multiple streams of income.
If there is just one thing that gives you the confidence to say no it’s having your money coming from different places. This allows you to turn down projects you don’t want and turn away clients you know will be a headache because you have options.
For example, I recently turned down a project I didn’t really want to do. It’s easier for me to do this because I know I don’t need to take it to pay my bills. Just note that in order to get to this space, you must first respect yourself and say no to things that you know won’t lead to any money.
The ability to say no in business will yield more time, more money and less stress. With practice, it becomes much easier to drop what isn’t serving you so you can move toward what will.